Climate

Typhoon Fitow heads for Japan, may hit Tokyo
September 5, 2007 07:10 AM - Reuters

A typhoon moving towards Japan was forecast on Wednesday to hit a region near Tokyo later in the week and bring heavy rains and strong winds to the capital. Typhoon Fitow, which means "beautiful fragrant flower" in a Micronesian language, was located some 650 km (400 miles) south of Tokyo and moving northwest at 15 km (9.4 miles) per hour as of 4 a.m. EDT Wednesday, Japan's Meteorological Agency said.

Felix rains on Honduras, mudslides feared
September 5, 2007 07:04 AM - Noel Randewich -Reuters

Rains from Hurricane Felix soaked Honduras on Wednesday, threatening dangerous flooding and mudslides after killing nine people in neighboring Nicaragua. The storm, which was a powerful Category 5 when it struck the Caribbean coast of Central America, revived memories of the killer Hurricane Mitch in 1998 but residents of Tegucigalpa appeared to have got off lightly this time around.

Hurricanes Felix, Henriette, Set Records, Wreak Havoc
September 4, 2007 09:10 PM - Paul Kiernan, Associated Press

CABO SAN LUCAS, Mexico - Felix walloped Central America's remote Miskito coastline and Henriette slammed into resorts on the tip of Baja California as a record-setting hurricane season got even wilder Tuesday with twin storms making landfall on the same day. Felix roared ashore before dawn as a Category 5 storm along Nicaragua's remote northeast corner - an isolated, swampy jungle where people get around mainly by canoe. The 160 mph winds peeled roofs off shelters and a police station, knocked down electric poles and stripped humble homes to a few walls.

Global Warming Link To Hurricanes Dean And Felix, Possible But Unknown
September 4, 2007 05:25 PM - Michael Christie, Reuters

MIAMI - Despite growing consensus that global warming may spawn stronger tropical cyclones, weather experts believe it is too soon to blame climate change for the unprecedented punch of back-to-back monster hurricanes. Hurricane Felix, a top-ranked storm on forecasters' Saffir-Simpson scale of hurricane intensity, slammed into Central America on Tuesday. Hurricane Dean, also a Category 5, battered Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula on August 21. It was the first time on record that two Atlantic hurricanes had made landfall as Category 5 storms in the same season, and only the fourth time since records began in 1851 that more than one Category 5 had formed in a year.

Protests, Heavy Security, Bush Arrives Australia For Asia-Pacific Summit
September 4, 2007 03:53 PM - Michael Perry and Caren Bohan, Reuters

SYDNEY - After a lightning visit to Iraq where he hinted at possible U.S. troop cuts, President George W. Bush arrived in Australia on Tuesday for an Asia-Pacific leaders' meeting amid heavy security and anti-war protests. Trade and climate change will top the agenda at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit, and Bush wants the forum's 21 economies to agree to a strongly worded pledge to reinvigorate the Doha round of world trade talks.

WWF Says Asia-Pacific Coal Rush Worsens Global Warming
September 4, 2007 08:11 AM - Reuters

Growing dependence on cheap coal to power rapid economic growth in the Asia-Pacific could undermine efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that is blamed for harmful changes in the world's climate, experts said on Tuesday. Between 2001 and 2006, coal use around the world grew by an unprecedented 30 percent. Asia, led by China, accounted for almost 90 percent of the growth, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) said at the launch of a climate change report in Sydney.

4 Dead, Felix Hits Central America
September 4, 2007 07:57 AM - Jimmy Sanchez- Associated Press

PUERTO CABEZAS, Nicaragua - The highly dangerous Hurricane Felix ripped into Central America on Tuesday, smashing up a port on Nicaragua's Caribbean coast and threatening deadly mudslides in Honduras and Guatemala. Two people were reported dead in Puerto Cabezas port in northern Nicaragua, where howling winds tore the roofs off homes and badly damaged a church. "The situation is chaotic. Puerto Cabezas is being totally destroyed," said Antonio Joya, a regional government official. "I'm sure it is going to be a total disaster." Uprooted trees flew through the air as thousands took shelter in two schools in the port, home to some 30,000 mostly Miskito Indians. Ambulances with sirens blaring raced through the streets.

4 Dead, Killer Heat In Southern California
September 4, 2007 07:18 AM - Reuters

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The week-long heat wave in Southern California has claimed four lives and caused power outages to more than half a million customers, utility and local officials said on Tuesday. Triple-digit temperatures lingered over some of Southern California for the seventh straight day on Tuesday, while most cities in the region saw temperatures in the mid-to-high 90s. The heatwave is expected to break by Wednesday.

Chicago: Nation's Largest School Bus Company Switches Entire Fleet To Bio-Fuel
September 3, 2007 08:04 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

CHICAGO - The nation's largest independent school bus company, the Cook Illinois Corporation in Chicago, is switching its entire fleet of school buses to burn bio diesel fuel. Biodiesel is a cleaner-burning diesel fuel made from natural, renewable sources such as vegetable oils. In addition, company officials will kick off a new Clean Air Club for kids and a new website that teaches kids about the importance of reducing air pollution. Cook-Illinois is now the largest school bus fleet in Illinois and the largest independently owned bus company in the country to use this new fuel.

Agreement reached on greenhouse gas curb
September 3, 2007 09:05 AM - Willia, J. Kole -Associated Press

Negotiators from 158 countries reached basic agreement Friday on rough targets aimed at getting some of the world's biggest polluters to reduce emissions of the greenhouse gases blamed for global warming. A weeklong U.N. climate conference concluded that industrialized countries should strive to cut emissions by 25 percent to 40 percent of their 1990 levels by 2020. Experts said that target would serve as a loose guide for a major international climate summit to be held in December in Bali, Indonesia. "We have reached broad agreement on the main issues," said Leon Charles, a negotiator from Grenada who helped oversee the Vienna talks.

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